But royalties garnered from a paid on-demand service in line with that of Spotify's (aapl) could turn out to be a boon for record labels. Previous attempts at music subscription services by YouTube's parent company, Alphabet - Google Play Music and YouTube Key - were lacklustre at best. Two other industry giants - Sony Music Entertainment and Universal Music Group - as well as Merlin (miinf), a consortium of independent labels, are reportedly in talks to sign up.
Spotify - which has paid more than $5 billion in music-licensing fees through September 2016 - faces increased competition from Apple Music in the space.
It's already got Google Play Music, YouTube Red and YouTube Music, but in March it's going to try its luck again with a new service for YouTube that's tentatively called "Remix", according to a report from Bloomberg.
It's not yet clear how the Remix service would differ from Google's existing offerings.
YouTube has apparently already struck a deal with Warner Music Group.
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Swedish music streaming service Spotify and Chinese internet company Tencent have struck a deal to take minority stakes in each other.
But what about YouTube Red, isn't that good enough?
"This transaction will allow both companies to benefit from the global growth of music streaming".
At the end of last month it emerged YouTube's system for reporting sexual comments on children's videos has not been working for more than a year.
According to Bloomberg sources, it'll be a a paid streaming service created to placate the record labels who've been seeking more revenue from YouTube streams.